The Bright Shiny Object Syndrome & How It Can Damage Your Business

As entrepreneurs we have immense freedom to be, do or have anything that we want. We have the opportunity to create any type of business that we desire, which matches our passions and interests.

As entrepreneurs we are visionaries. We are naturally adept at dreaming up new possibilities. This creative ability affords us an incredible advantage but it can also have a major downside: The Bright Shiny Object Syndrome.

Any type of business can fall prey to the Bright Shiny Object but none more so than an online business.

Online Business Is Rife With BSO

Running an online business is completely different from running a bricks and mortar outfit. You don’t have to commit to a lease, employ staff, take out loans or buy inventory and equipment. Because it’s so easy to establish an online enterprise, you can be torn in multiple different directions.

There is much less “skin in the game” (ugh, that expression!) and it’s almost too easy to switch directions on a whim as soon as that bright sparkly object catches your eye.

Digging Shallow Holes

Have you read the story by Napoleon Hill about the guy who gave up digging when he was just three feet from gold? There is more than one piece of inspiration that you can take away from that story. Not just the fact that persistence leads to success, but that often, you have to be on your hands and knees digging and shovelling in one direction for quite some time before you see a glimmer of gold.

If you’re digging dozens of shallow holes, what’s going to happen? Not a lot!

Focus, Focus, Focus

When I first made the life-changing decision to set up my own business, I only had the one idea, I didn’t have several different ideas. I knew that I could hang out my shingle and offer services based on the skills I had acquired from working for corporates for over 10 years. I pursued that idea until it became a winner. I didn’t fall prey to the Bright Shiny Object Syndrome (that was to come later!).

Before I go any further there is a caveat. Some people CAN juggle more than one business at a time and make a success of it. But most people do best by focusing on one idea at a time and seeing it through to fruition.

How The BSO Got Me

It was only later, when I became dazzled by the ground-breaking opportunities offered by digital information product creation that the Bright Shiny Object Syndrome caught up with me.

I decided that I wanted to create an eBook and an live teleseminar course helping others in some way. But what should I write about? People had started emailing me through my freelance website asking how they could work from home too. That was the very first idea that I had but I didn’t pursue it straight away.

I had tons of other light bulb moments, including something about health and fitness because that’s another passion of mine. After a while of going round and round in circles, I always remember my business coach urging me on the phone to “Just pick one!”

So I picked one and it became a success! But if I had tried to do two different things at once I don’t think either one of them would have panned out quite so well. Not to mention the fact that the target market for both were very different, so I would have been scattering my marketing efforts in two different directions.

Awareness Is Key

As with anything, the key is to become aware of the Bright Shiny Object Syndrome so it doesn’t run away with you! When you feel yourself being drawn like a moth to a flame to the latest idea that comes to your fertile mind, stop for a moment.

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t pursue it, after all being somewhat flexible is essential in business. But take a moment to step back a little. The pen is your friend – write down your latest light bulb moment and let it ferment for a short while.

Only then will you be able to get some perspective. You’ll know deep down whether you’re seeking some kind of distraction with this Bright Shiny Object or whether it’s a legitimate journey to take!

And don’t forget, you don’t have to do everything right now. If if it’s right for you, you can always come back to it later!

What tips do you have about avoiding the Bright Shiny Object Syndrome? Leave them in the comments section below!

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